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2 Scientific Inquiry-S copy

Scientific Inquiry
What do scientists do?
Science is a unique way of learning about the natural world. Scientists work hard to explain events, living
organisms, and changes we see around us every day. Model 1 depicts typical activities or stages scientists
engage in when conducting their work. The design of the model shows how various steps in scientific
inquiry are connected to one another. None of the activities stands alone—they are all interdependent.
Model 1 – Scientific Inquiry
with the wider
on the
Define the
the problem
the results
and gather
Scientific Inquiry
Form a
State the
1. What is the central theme of all scientific inquiry as shown in Model 1?
2. What are the nine activities that scientists engage in as part of scientific inquiry?
3. Which of the activities would require a scientist to make some observations?
4. Which of the steps would require a scientist to gather data?
5. Considering the activity described as “communicating with the wider community,” in what ways
might a scientist communicate?
6. Remembering that scientists often work in teams, which activities would require a scientist to
communicate with others?
7. Given your responses to Questions 1–6, do you think these activities must be carried out in a
specific order or can multiple activities be carried out at the same time? Justify your response by
giving examples to support your answer.
POGIL™ Activities for High School Biology
Model 2 – Redi’s Experiment
Fly eggs and
Solid cover
Screen cover
Container 1
Container 2
Container 3
The table below represents the ideas the Italian scientist Francesco Redi (1626–1698) might have had as
he was carrying out his experiments. The questions that follow the table relate to the process Redi may
have used.
Discovery of flies and maggots on a piece of meat.
Scientific Inquiry
Where did the flies and maggots come from?
Are the maggots and flies “related”?
Gather information about the origins of flies and maggots. The year is
1668 and no scientific studies are available, but the common belief is that
living things such as flies can be generated from nonliving things, such as
rotting meat. This belief is known as spontaneous generation.
Does meat spontaneously generate flies and maggots?
If I leave a container of meat open and seal another container, then both
should create flies and maggots.
Set up two containers with meat; one will be open and one will be covered.
Leave them for several days.
Flies and maggots are found in the jar with no cover (1) but not in the
covered jar (2).
Was the reason for no flies in the second jar due to the “bad air” being
sealed in the jar, which stopped the flies and maggots from being generated
by the meat?
Run the experiment again adding a third jar with a fine mesh cover. Flies
and maggots are only found in the open jar.
Flies lay eggs on the meat, which hatch into maggots, which become flies.
Scientific Inquiry
8. What year did Redi carry out his experiment?
9. a. Describe the accepted theory during Redi’s time explaining the origin of the flies.
b. What was this theory called?
10. How many experiments/jars did Redi set up the first time?
11. What was the purpose of having one jar left open and the other one sealed?
12. Why did Redi carry out another experiment with three jars?
13. Using the nine activities from Model 1, complete the table in Model 2 for each of the processes
Redi completed in his investigation.
POGIL™ Activities for High School Biology
Extension Questions
Model 3 – Pasteur’s Experiment
Flask of nutrient broth left open
to the air. After several days,
bacteria are seen in the flask.
Flask left open to the air
Open to the air
Part 1
Flask containing nutrient broth
is boiled, killing any bacteria
present. The goose neck shape
allows air to enter but traps
Part 2
After several days
there is still no
bacterial growth
in the flask.
Part 3
The neck of the flask
is broken and bacterial
growth is observed in the
broth after several days.
14. Study the diagrams above of another famous experiment by French chemist and microbiologist
Louis Pasteur (1822–1895), which fully refuted the idea of spontaneous generation. Create a
table similar to the one in Model 2 to outline the experimental processes that Pasteur carried out.
Scientific Inquiry
15. Had you been Louis Pasteur what would have been your reflections and conclusions based on
this experiment?
POGIL™ Activities for High School Biology